Course details


Sat 11 Jan 2020 - Sun 12 Jan 2020
2.45pm Sat - 2.00pm Sun



According to Sartre that ‘existence precedes essence’ is the first principle’ of Existentialism. There is no ‘human nature’ determined by God or nature, there is no objective set of rules that we must follow to decide what to do. Instead we become what we are by our own choices. In his new book Rethinking Existentialism, Jonathan Webber offers an interpretation of existentialism as the ethical theory that human freedom is the foundation of all other values. 


Programme details


2.45pm           Course Registration

3.00pm           What is Existentialism? Back to post-war Paris

                        JONATHAN WEBBER

4.30pm           Tea / coffee

5.00pm           What is Existentialism? Back to pre-war Paris

                        KATE KIRKPATRICK                    

6.30pm           Break / bar open

7.00pm           Dinner

8.15pm-          Rethinking existentialism: From radical freedom to

9.30pm           sedimentation

                       JONATHAN WEBBER      


8.15am           Breakfast (residents only)

9.30am           Beauvoir on becoming a woman

                       KATE KIRKPATRICK                                             

10.45am         Coffee / tea

11.15am         Q & A

                      Questions directed by MARIANNE TALBOT

12.30pm         Break / bar open

1.00pm           Lunch

2.00pm           Course disperses



Description Costs
Tuition (includes tea/coffee) £80.00


If you are in receipt of a state benefit you may be eligible for a reduction of 50% of tuition fees.

If you do not qualify for the concessionary fee but are experiencing financial hardship, you may still be eligible for financial assistance.

Concessionary fees for short courses



Dr Kate Kirkpatrick


Kate Kirkpatrick is Lecturer in Religion, Philosophy and Culture at King's College London. She is the author of Sartre on Sin (OUP, 2017), Sartre and Theology (Bloomsbury, 2017), The Mystical Sources of Existentialist Thought (Routledge, 2018), and Becoming Beauvoir: A Life (Bloomsbury, 2019).


Professor Jonathan Webber


Jonathan Webber is Professor of Philosophy at Cardiff University and President of the UK Sartre Society. He is the author of Rethinking Existentialism (OUP, 2018) and The Existentialism of Jean-Paul Sartre (2009), editor of Reading Sartre: on Phenomenology and Existentialism (Routledge, 2011), and translator of Sartre's book The Imaginary (Routledge, 2004). For more on his current thoughts on existentialism, see: http://blogs.cardiff.ac.uk/rethinkingexistentialism/


Ms Marianne Talbot

Director of Studies


Marianne Talbot took her first degree at London University, then her B.Phil at Oxford (Corpus Christi College). She has taught for the colleges of Oxford University for 30 years (1987 – 1990 at Pembroke College, 1991 – 2000 at Brasenose College). She has been Director of Studies in Philosophy at OUDCE since 2001. She is the author of Bioethics: An Introduction, and Critical Reasoning: A Romp Through the Foothills of Logic. Marianne’s podcasts have been hugely popular. Two of them have been global number one on iTunesU. One of these (The Nature of Arguments) has been downloaded 7 million times.




Accommodation for this weekend is at Rewley House for Saturday night only.

Depending on availability it may also be possible to extend your stay, please enquire at the time of booking for availability and prices.

All bedrooms are modern, comfortably furnished and each room has tea and coffee making facilities, Freeview television, and Free WiFi and private bath or shower rooms.